Sub-cluster-aware Network for Few-shot Skin Disease Classification

by   Shuhan LI, et al.

This paper studies the few-shot skin disease classification problem. Based on a crucial observation that skin disease images often exist multiple sub-clusters within a class (i.e., the appearances of images within one class of disease vary and form multiple distinct sub-groups), we design a novel Sub-Cluster-Aware Network, namely SCAN, for rare skin disease diagnosis with enhanced accuracy. As the performance of few-shot learning highly depends on the quality of the learned feature encoder, the main principle guiding the design of SCAN is the intrinsic sub-clustered representation learning for each class so as to better describe feature distributions. Specifically, SCAN follows a dual-branch framework, where the first branch is to learn class-wise features to distinguish different skin diseases, and the second one aims to learn features which can effectively partition each class into several groups so as to preserve the sub-clustered structure within each class. To achieve the objective of the second branch, we present a cluster loss to learn image similarities via unsupervised clustering. To ensure that the samples in each sub-cluster are from the same class, we further design a purity loss to refine the unsupervised clustering results. We evaluate the proposed approach on two public datasets for few-shot skin disease classification. The experimental results validate that our framework outperforms the other state-of-the-art methods by around 2


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