From Barlow Twins to Triplet Training: Differentiating Dementia with Limited Data


Differential diagnosis of dementia is challenging due to overlapping symptoms, with structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) being the primary method for diagnosis. Despite the clinical value of computer- aided differential diagnosis, research has been limited, mainly due to the absence of public datasets that contain diverse types of dementia. This leaves researchers with small in-house datasets that are insufficient for training deep neural networks (DNNs). Self-supervised learning shows promise for utilizing unlabeled MRI scans in training, but small batch sizes for volumetric brain scans make its application challenging. To address these issues, we propose Triplet Training for differential diagnosis with limited target data. It consists of three key stages: (i) self-supervised pre-training on unlabeled data with Barlow Twins, (ii) self-distillation on task-related data, and (iii) fine-tuning on the target dataset. Our approach significantly outperforms traditional training strategies, achieving a balanced accuracy of 75.6%. We further provide insights into the training process by visualizing changes in the latent space after each step. Finally, we validate the robustness of Triplet Training in terms of its individual components in a comprehensive ablation study.
Medical Imaging with Deep Learning