The aim of this retrospective study was to compare the outcome of surgical endodontic treatment preformed using the traditional versus modern techniques. There were 110 patients who were treated by surgical endodontic treatment between 2000 and 2002 and evaluated from their dental charts. The surgical endodontic treatment was preformed using a traditional or modern technique. The traditional technique included root-end resection with a 45 degrees bevel angle, and retrograde preparation using a carbide round bur. The modern technique included root-end resection with minimal or no bevel, and retrograde preparation using ultrasonic retro-tips with the aid of a dental operating microscope. The retrograde filling material for both techniques was intermediate restorative material. There were 71 patients with 88 treated teeth that were compatible with the inclusion criteria. Complete healing rate for the teeth treated with the modern technique (91.1%) was significantly higher than that for teeth treated using the traditional technique (44.2%) (p < 0.0001). In the traditional technique a significant (p = 0.032) negative influence of the tooth type was found. Modern surgical endodontic treatment using operative microscope and ultrasonic tips significantly improves the outcome of the therapy compared to the traditional technique.