woman doctor's office

Photo: Tetra Images/Getty

1 of 4
The Myth: When someone says they've been tested, they mean tested for everything.

The Truth: Sexually transmitted disease screens vary from doctor to doctor, and nobody tests for everything, says Lauren Streicher, MD, a clinical associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine and the author of Sex Rx: Hormones, Health, and Your Best Sex Ever. "My typical screen covers gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphilis, HIV and hepatitis," says Streicher. "But there are more than 20 different STDs out there, and there's no one test that covers them all."

Keep in mind that routine screenings don't test for HPV, says Streicher, the most common sexually transmitted infection in the U.S. Your doc would need to do a specific HPV test (usually in conjunction with a Pap smear) to look for abnormal cells on your cervix.