It is established that the instantaneous heart rate (HR) of healthy humans keeps on changing. Analysis of heart rate variability (HRV) has become a popular non invasive tool for assessing the activities of autonomic nervous system. Depressed HRV has been found in several disorders, like diabetes mellitus (DM) and coronary artery disease, characterised by autonomic nervous dysfunction. A new technique, which searches for pattern repeatability in a time series, is proposed specifically for the analysis of heart rate data. These set of indices, which are termed as pattern repeatability measure and pattern repeatability ratio are compared with approximate entropy and sample entropy. In our analysis, based on the method developed, it is observed that heart rate variability is significantly different for DM patients, particularly for patients with diabetic foot ulcer.