HiFuse: Hierarchical Multi-Scale Feature Fusion Network for Medical Image Classification

21 Sep 2022  ·  Xiangzuo Huo, Gang Sun, Shengwei Tian, Yan Wang, Long Yu, Jun Long, Wendong Zhang, Aolun Li ·

Medical image classification has developed rapidly under the impetus of the convolutional neural network (CNN). Due to the fixed size of the receptive field of the convolution kernel, it is difficult to capture the global features of medical images. Although the self-attention-based Transformer can model long-range dependencies, it has high computational complexity and lacks local inductive bias. Much research has demonstrated that global and local features are crucial for image classification. However, medical images have a lot of noisy, scattered features, intra-class variation, and inter-class similarities. This paper proposes a three-branch hierarchical multi-scale feature fusion network structure termed as HiFuse for medical image classification as a new method. It can fuse the advantages of Transformer and CNN from multi-scale hierarchies without destroying the respective modeling so as to improve the classification accuracy of various medical images. A parallel hierarchy of local and global feature blocks is designed to efficiently extract local features and global representations at various semantic scales, with the flexibility to model at different scales and linear computational complexity relevant to image size. Moreover, an adaptive hierarchical feature fusion block (HFF block) is designed to utilize the features obtained at different hierarchical levels comprehensively. The HFF block contains spatial attention, channel attention, residual inverted MLP, and shortcut to adaptively fuse semantic information between various scale features of each branch. The accuracy of our proposed model on the ISIC2018 dataset is 7.6% higher than baseline, 21.5% on the Covid-19 dataset, and 10.4% on the Kvasir dataset. Compared with other advanced models, the HiFuse model performs the best. Our code is open-source and available from https://github.com/huoxiangzuo/HiFuse.

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