We investigate the role of Coulomb correlation in an electron-hole gas that is strongly driven by an optical pump. Coulomb scattering is treated including Born diagrams and the light-dressing of the carriers is consistently included. When the pump is spectrally tuned at the excitonic resonance, the Born correlation is found to weakly affect the fully coherent Hartree-Fock results. Our model calculations fully support recent and quite unexpected observations of excitonic Rabi oscillations in III-V quantum wells. (C) 1999 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.